The Foodist: sustainability in three issues

In a one-off column, new editor-in-chief Jon Hawkins reflects on three sustainability issues and counting

The Foodist: sustainability special

Tattoos. A dress made of brussels sprouts, kale and green beans. The food eaten by Elvis. The joy of eggs. We covered a lot of ground in the first issue of Foodism, launched a little under four years ago, but it's hard to imagine we ever sat in a planning meeting and decided these were the things that would announce London's newest food and drink magazine to the world.

But they're all in there, along with plenty of other stuff that's probably more along the lines of what you'd expect, including a feature by Neil Davey on stocking your larder with food and drink all produced inside the M25. Seeing that story again recently made me smile, because it reminded me that then, as now, some of the best pieces we've run have focused on the people – chefs, campaigners, producers, bartenders, farmers, front of house and more – striving for a fairer, more sensible food system.

This is the third sustainability special issue of Foodism, and it has a tough act to follow – the last one took home the Guild of Food Writers' Campaigning and Investigative Food Work Award earlier in the summer. That win really pleased me, because it vindicated our decision to talk about the ways positive change can be effected through food in a way that we hoped wasn't preachy or lecturing. Our aim was to celebrate those doing more and doing better, and to arm readers with some ideas about how to consider the impact of what they eat and drink – and where and how they consume it – on the planet.

The good news is that, even in the four years since we launched Foodism, there's been a perceptible shift from sustainability as an eco buzzword to a common-sense approach adopted by an increasing number of people throughout the industry. More to the point, it's an approach more diners and drinkers expect, though let's not kid ourselves that this means 'job done' – in the grand scheme of things, these are baby steps.

In our latest sustainability issue, at least, you'll find plenty of evidence that these are steps in the right direction, and I hope you'll enjoy reading it as much as me. And if you don't, send your complaints to Mike Gibson, because he's the man stepping into my shoes as the editor of Foodism from now on.

It's been a pleasure, and I wish Mike the best of times in the best of jobs.